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How to know if you have IBS? I don’t want to get into details, but my stomach is always messed up and illalways have to go to the bathroom. I’ve been having problems for 2 ish years now and I removed dairy and that helped me a lot (I’m lactose intolerant) but my stomach still gets messed up most of the time if I eat anything that I don’t normally eat or any sweets/desserts/unhealthy food. I wanted to know if there’s a way to tell because I read somewhere that it’s hard to tell? Some of my symptoms match up, but not all and if I go to doctors what would I say?

My parents think I’m a hypochondriac so convincing them to take me to the doctor is very difficult and my doctor I think knows this and never takes me too seriously. I don’t think I’m a hypochondriac tho since it’s been an ongoing thing. My stomach can get super bloated and it hurts. I was just wondering if someone else goes through this and if I do have IBS what do I eat or how do you deal with it? Idk a lot about it except from Ben Stiller’s role in And Along Came Polly lol.



7 Replies

Perhaps keep a food diary, then you could show both parents and doctors formal evidence. You could track when you get bloated, when you have a sudden urge to go to the loo etc.

You may also be able to identify what foods are triggering it. And then (if it’s a simple fix) be able to avoid those foods.

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Hi Anita,

Firstly its often hard for Dr's to diagnoses stomach issues as stress can act like a trigger for an upset stomach hence the patient being made to feel neurotic.

Have you had any blood tests because this would show and deficiencies which can be an indicator thats somethings wrong.

What interests me is the bloating and the lactose intolerance as our intestines have villi that are little tentacles that absorb the nutrients into our bodies and these villi increase the surface area of the intestines so its similar to a football pitch. When our intestines are inflamed then the villi will be inflamed and lactate the enzyme that breaks down lactose which is produced at the tips of our villi isn't being produced. (Most people find avoiding dairy helps recover from an upset stomach) so an upset stomach can trigger lactose intolerance, when really its a symptom and not the cause...

Have you heard of coeliac disease? as thats when gluten triggers an immune response as it sees gluten as a toxin so our villi flatten bloating occurs with pain cramp and the runs. There is a simple IgA blood test to test for anti bodies.

I have to agree with Lilrhib that keeping a food diary is a very good idea to eliminate a food intolerance and I'd do it with advice from a nutritionist as its important to have a balanced diet.

And good luck with this as it must be miserable for you.

Jerry 😊


All good advice, but one thing - don't try cutting out gluten before the test for coeliac as that can distort the test.

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You're absolutely right benwl as thats a very important point.


Hi Anita,

I would encourage you to visit your doctor again and push for a referral to a gastroenterologist. That's what I did and it was quite reassuring to have had an ultrasound scan and colonoscopy and endoscopy and have these show no problems. Also (and this may say more about my personality than anything else) having a formal diagnosis of IBS from a specialist really helped.

I think the symptoms of IBS can vary widely between people and it's not like there are a set of symptoms that you must have. It's more like a default diagnosis once other physical causes have been ruled out.

My IBS was helped by going on the FODMAP diet and remains better on my current low fat high fibre vegan diet. It remains a chronic condition and if I'm on holiday and my diet slips a bit I can feel it starting up again. But I think I'm lucky in having responded so well to a dietry change.

Keeping a food diary as lilrhib suggests is also very good advice


Remember IBS is a syndrome not a disease. It is a convenient label when nothing else is found. If you have been having problems for 2 years, then it is best to get expert advice from a doctor.

If you are getting bloating, there is sometimes a simple explanation. You may not need much change to your diet but changes to how you eat. Swallowing air can cause IBS type symptoms. Make sure you chew your food thoroughly and best to eat away from distractions like TVs.

See this link nhs.uk/Livewell/digestive-h...

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Try wheatfree diet for a few months.

Also calprotectin test in stool.


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